Qualities to look for in the perfect not-for-profit candidate
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Hiring the perfect candidate for a not-for-profit organisation is tough. Australia has over 52,000 registered charities, according to the Australian Charities Report, many of which are concentrated in larger urban areas such as Melbourne and Sydney. This makes recruitment in this sector highly competitive. With years of experience recruiting for not-for-profit organisations, KLC knows what it takes to find the perfect candidate. Here are a few indicators that will help determine who you want to take onboard.
1. Passion for the cause
Everyone in your organisation should be pushing towards one common goal, no matter how niche or technical their role. Having an understanding of the work a charity does is not the same as having a genuine stake in its success, and this is an easy way to distinguish between two applicants with similar skills or experience.
2. Flexibility and resourcefulness
Working in a not-for profit isn’t predictable. Your organisation has to react to unexpected events, and you need employees who can do the same. The right candidate should be flexible and resourceful, able to draw on personal and professional skills in order to adapt quickly when circumstances change, and not someone likely to be demoralised if a project has to be put on the back burner. As resources are often thinly stretched within not-for-profits, you also need a candidate with transferable skills that can be put to use in different areas.
3. The right attitude
Your organisation is exactly that – an organisation. You want someone who can work alongside the rest of the team, and is prepared to do some of the less glamorous tasks. A great fundraiser is fantastic, but a great fundraiser prepared to load boxes or distribute leaflets is better. For your part, ensuring that the job description contains examples of some of these smaller tasks will help you avoid candidates not prepared to pitch-in to all aspects of non-for-profit life.
4. Important soft skills
There are some soft skills that are particularly important in the not-for-profit sector:
- Communication – you want someone who can get your message across, as well as communicate with the rest of the team
- Imagination – seeing opportunities for new campaigns is as important as fitting into existing ones
- Problem-solving – with so many demands on your time, you need someone with the ability to think on their feet to solve problems
Finding top candidates for not-for-profits can be a time and resource consuming task, but that is where KLC comes in. We have years of experience in finding the best candidates for not-for-profit roles, contact us today to find out more.